The 34-year-old man who died during protests in West Berbice was a father of two of Block B1 Waterloo, Bath Settlement.
Prettipaul Hargobin called “Roy” was killed at around 15:45hrs on Wednesday along the Bath Settlement Public Road.
According to police reports, the victim was in his motor vehicle on the Public Road at Bath Settlement, when it was observed that he exited the vehicle with a shotgun and discharged one round into the air before discharging three rounds towards a crowd of protesters, who were about 60 meters away.
As a result of his actions, Hargobin was attacked and beaten by the crowd, whom the police said are also residents of Bath Settlement.
Having observed the commotion, police ranks who were some distance away rushed to the scene, where the discovered Hargobin lying on ground with several injuries about his body.
However, Hargobin’s sister, Ronita, told INews that she is not aware that her brother has a firearm. But she related that they were first attacked by the protesters before her brother was killed.
She recalled that she was on the Public Road with some friends when her brother came out of with his vehicle and was looking for some guy on a blue motorcycle. She said her brother was upset and crying, but would not tell her what happened to him.
Ronita said she followed her brother in search of the person he was looking for and they ended up meeting persons protesting on the road.
“We asked if anybody see the person on the blue motorcycle and they said ‘no’. Everyone flock around us asking what happened and I don’t know if anybody think we were there to fight but some of them hit up – one of them cuff me to my head. They hit at [my brother] also but I didn’t allow him to fight back… They shut off the vehicle and kept the key. Then he asked for the key to go back home,” she stated.
The distraught sister said that Hargobin then left and as she was trying to get someone to take her to his house, she saw her brother’s vehicle heading back towards the protesters on the Public Road.
“I heard gunshots and then I saw a whole lot of people flock around him. I don’t know what they did to him but I was told he was chopped. I saw them hitting the vehicle and damage it – they torched it and I couldn’t do anything. I asked them to stop hit my brother but it was in vain; nobody there help we…” the woman related.
According to Ronita, she rushed home to get her car to take her brother to the hospital but by the time she returned to the scene, the police was already there and they took him to seek medical attention.
However, Hargobin died before reaching the Fort Wellington Hospital.
She described her brother as loving and supportive, noting that he has never been involved in such a situation.
Hargobin was married with two children. His body is currently at the hospital awaiting a postmortem examination.